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Will newspapers survive social media?

By Calli Rathsam

7810709_sMany people assumed the rise of social media (and with it the rise of amateur journalists) would turn the newspaper (and perhaps the news media itself) into a relic. And an article by Paul Eastham proposes a valid argument as to why the newspaper will survive social media and amateur content.

Eastham explains the theory that the rise of social media and the ability for users to easily copy and circulate articles without paying for them would essentially make journalism unprofitable. And then he details why such theory is flawed.

Consumers will stand by brands they trust to provide their news, he says. Commercial news brands will keep their place in consumers’ esteem because they provide information packaged in a way that readers are comfortable with. Commercial news brands are known for recognized standards and guidelines, whereas social media is a free-for-all full of Internet trolls.

In order to survive and stand out, some newspapers are adapting to the changing landscape. By tirelessly studying reader data and posting more opinion-based content, they are able to publish material that will resonate with readers that an amateur online couldn’t match.

The switch from charging for advertising to charging for content access is also helping newspapers stay alive. Charging readers to access online content or including online access in the price of a subscription to the printed paper are two of the methods modern newspapers are devising to maintain revenue and surviving in the digital age.

Another factor important when debating the staying power of the newspaper is smaller, local newspapers. These hyperlocal community newspapers provide readers information on what’s going on in their communities – information that otherwise might not be readily available on the Internet.

What’s your opinion on the future of the newspaper? Is it here to stay, or will it one day be a thing of the past?

Here at Axia Public Relations, while we understand the importance of social media, we also believe news media is here to stay. Click here to download our media relations ebook, “Learn Media Relations from the Media” and find out what journalists really want so you can see your story published.

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Featured image credit: 123rf.com

Topics: public relations, shared media

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